Researcher Workshops on Family Lives and the Environment

Delhi and Hyderabad

The Family Lives and the Environment study examines the complex meanings of ‘environment’ in family lives in South East India (Telangana/Andhra Pradesh) and the UK. A qualitative multi-method approach combines visual, creative and narrative methods to capture the dynamic diversity of family lives in each country, showing how environmental understandings are situated and negotiated within the priorities and practices of everyday lives.  The study challenges understandings of cross-national research by exploring the potential to 'learn from difference' across contrasting national contexts, questioning ideas that the global South and global North are necessarily opposites, and creating opportunities for shared learning across countries.

In this workshop, we will present key findings from the research, and will work with you to explore the methodological approach and the value, and challenges, of the cross-national narrative multi-method approach. Working with samples of data from fieldwork in England and Telangana/Andhra Pradesh, we will share our experience of applying methods including photography, mapping and walking interviews, and of individual and family group interviewing. Workshop discussion will address methodological and substantive concerns – including ethical and practical considerations; the application of narrative analysis in multi-method qualitative research; and contributions to theorising ‘shades of environmentalism’ (Guha 2006) in ways that account for the contextual specificity and dynamic diversity of family lives.

The Family Lives and the Environment study is part of a major investment by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) in a research node called NOVELLA (Narratives of Varied Everyday Lives and Linked Approaches, www.novella.ac.uk). The projects in the NOVELLA Node work with existing and newly collected qualitative data to build new methodological insights into how to address the 'disconnect' between behaviour and constructed meaning in understanding habitual practice in everyday lives.  

The workshops will take place on 19 January 2015 in Delhi and 21 January 2015 in Hyderabad. Download the programme here.

The researcher workshop will be preceded by an Expert Consultation. Download the programme here.

Further details available from the Family Lives and the Environment study Director: Janet Boddy j.m.boddy@sussex.ac.uk